Retail

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Miss Roboto at your service

They’re always on time, never disheveled, and they maintain a consistently pleasant disposition. Could androids be the ideal front-line retail staff of the future?

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Second Cup’s new ingredient: escapism – it’s working

When Bruce Elliot took over the reins of Second Cup at the end of 2004, he quickly learned a valuable lesson about café culture: It’s not about the coffee. It’s not about food quality or clean washrooms either. Elliot, who was previously president of Labatt Breweries of Canada, discovered the secret to good café sales was something more touchy feely. ‘The real drivers were emotional,’ he says. ‘It’s about how you feel.’

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Fresh depressed

It’s been my habit for many years to do the family grocery run on Saturday morning. Like many urban dwellers struggling to eke out an affluent existence, I regard such domestic routines as burdensome. Frankly, after a week of heavy lifting in the trenches of commerce, I’d rather be trout fishing.

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Dairy Queen: an icon in transition

When he turned 13, Jean Champagne was given an unusual birthday present: a Dairy Queen uniform and the opportunity to make ice cream cones in his hometown of St. Catharines, Ont. ‘It was a big deal,’ says Champagne, who was the middle child of a large family.

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Target’s addictive DM for The Bead Addict

It’s not everyday a syringe full of decorative beads lands in your mailbox. Or a mini liquor bottle full, for that matter.

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Media deconstructed: Connected

We chose ‘Connected’ as the theme of this year’s Best Plan exercise to reflect the importance of having the multiple touchpoints in today’s integrated media plans work together – effectively – and to complete the circle: get noticed, get the message through, and get results.

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Tracy Fellows’ Evolution

For seven years, Canadian Tire had been milking the old ‘Ted and Gloria’ campaign, featuring the annoying, nerdy dad who never met a gadget he didn’t like. But with the brand’s increased emphasis on women shoppers and new products, Tracy Fellows, VP consumer advertising and marketing, decided it was time to scrap the tried-and-true – but tired – marketing strategy to create a more integrated one. She hit a homerun.

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Michael Brossard’s Golden Year

If Rona’s Michael Brossard were to sum up his success in 2006, it could be boiled down to one word: Olympics.

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Upcoming

In print…

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Moving east

Noticed a Boston Pizza lately? If not, you will. The Richmond, B.C.-based restaurant chain plans to open 25 additional restaurants in Ontario and Atlantic Canada by year’s end. Leading the charge is Wendy Hendry, the company’s new director of regional marketing for Eastern Canada.

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Hires that make you go hmmm

MARKETERS

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Rising Young Media Stars

In his recent book Erase Everything and Start Over!, Pierre Delagrave, president of Cossette Media, and vice-chairman of the new global independent media services company Columbus Media International (see page 62), stated that the revolution we’ve experienced so far in the introduction of new media and technologies is only the first wave. Wireless Internet is second and will soon be part of daily life. To fully deal with this, he says both clients and agencies should have early adopters on staff. Media shops are already on it, staffing up with an exceptional calibre of innovative and strategic young people, so strategy asked media directors to identify some of their rising young stars, and here’s their take on the mediaverse.

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Brilliant: Away to the races

Quebecers have a special place in their hearts for The Grand Prix. The Canadian circuit stop was June 25 in Montreal, but the excitement started to build in April. This year, Provigo and its parentco Loblaw decided to tap into that Formula 1 buzz, and ran a pre-Grands prix – Les Grands Prix des épiceries. The results? It’s a winner.

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Retail hook-ups heat up

Time-pressed grocery shoppers aren’t going to venture down the cereal aisle in Loblaws unless they need cereal. Nor are they going to seek out the music section of Wal-Mart unless they really want that new Pearl Jam CD.

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TV therapy

Screaming children are an all-too-familiar part of the grocery shopping experience. And, chances are good that parents of the bored little tantrum-throwers will cut their trips short to regain some peace.